edf original playa

EDF does it for the parking lot and cruising down the shopping district on Original Playa.

“Aye, wassup?” EDF asks consistently throughout his end of the year tape, Original Playa. It’s as calm a signifier and alert to be relaxed as there can be in Houston. With Platinum Hands producing and sequencing the entire thing, it’s a relaxed effort centered around being the man. In fact, EDF’s operated as a low stakes kind of rapper for a while now. Releasing music for the love of the game as opposed to making a grandoise statement, EDF resides right inside of that nebulus of old SUC members who talked big shit and aimed to be neighborhood superstars.

Which makes Original Playa a brief, yet fun joyride through the past. Platinum Hands finely tunes his synths and drums to that of Kool & The Gang circa the ’70s, an early entry point into what eventually became G-Funk. It also became the baroque, often glossy and woozy Houston sound that has morphed into a weird monolith over the last two decades. “I keep something in my cup for those sunny days,” EDF raps on “Gs N Ballas,” where a few twinkling piano keys get swallowed up by a chunky, humming bassline. “I keep something in my stash for those rainy days / I keep my vision on clear for those grainy days / I keep them hoes in my phone for them training day.”

Perhaps its perfect that Original Playa closes with one of the more curious cases in Houston rap history: Yungstar. “Show Surround” features the man whose “June 27th” freestyle sent him into orbit as a relaxed veteran. He’s still got that kicked up chirp and unmistakable drawl but he’s not rapping in fast-forward as he had years prior. Instead, he lets his flow dribble out like James Harden in an isolation call with the same flair for the absurd. Nobody would dare call their electric whip Tetris but Yungstar would. A blocked out candy painted sedan with everybody looking? A neighborhood star speciality.

Packed with features from Slim Thug to Mike Red, Original Playa is EDF in a rather pristine element. Production that sounds like summer times, raps that feel as singular to Houston as they can be. Flip thought about buying Worthing, EDF wants Lamar. Because stunting on your old high school by buying it is a petty guilty pleasure all of us can rellish in. Stream the album below and purchase it here.